Do I need a VA or a PA?

Bringing support into your business is never a decision that should be taken lightly. When you make that choice, you want to know that you’re hiring the right person in the right role to get the best results.

When it’s a support role you are looking to fill, many coaches recommend bringing a Virtual Assistant (VA) or Personal Assistant (PA) onto your team to relieve you of tasks that are draining you of time that could be better spent elsewhere in the business.

Knowing whether a VA or a PA is right for your business though, can be a difficult decision. So, here are the facts…

What does a VA do?

A VA is a freelance member of staff who can be brought in to support your business on a part-time flexible basis. When most people think of a VA they immediately think of all the admin tasks they can hand over to them. They are, however, capable of so much more support for your business, including systemising your business, managing your finances and creating processes to make your day more efficient.

Small business owners and businesses that are prone to rapid change often see the most benefit from having a VA on board, particularly if you are not really sure about what your support requirements will be each month. A VA will be able to offer more flexibility for change, including how many hours you require and how their time will be used. Plus, VAs give SMEs the opportunity to have an experienced PA or Executive Assistant without paying the £30k – £40k salary or extra employer costs like National Insurance and holiday pay.

When wouldn’t a VA be a good fit?

There is one key drawback to hiring a VA over a PA in your business, and that is that they will also be helping multiple other clients in a similar way, so they will only be involved in the business for the number of hours you retain them for.

What does a PA do?

Until recently, the core difference between a VA and a PA was that a VA was solely an online role and a PA used to be present in the office. Now that remote working is becoming much more common practice, the line between these two roles is far less clear-cut as many PA services (ourselves included) have moved online.

Where a VA is juggling multiple businesses, though, a PA is employed full-time within your business. This will mean that they will have more time to build internal relationships as well as relationships with your clients. Slightly larger and more developed businesses often benefit more from having a PA on their team as the workflow they are looking to handover is more stable, predictable and better suited to someone who is working in-house and in the office.

When wouldn’t a PA be a good fit?

One of the key criteria when working with a PA is consistency and the commitment to employing someone and everything that goes with that. If your business is not quite at that point yet or you are aware that your requirements or budget might change month by month then a VA could be your best bet.

It can be difficult to know which of these options is best suited for you and your business, so if you would like some help working out whether a VA or a PA would be a better fit for you and your business, contact us today to arrange a free 15 minute call.

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